ECONOMY

In Brief

Civil servants’ 2004 pay raises beat inflation Civil servants will receive pay raises averaging 5.4 percent as of January 1, 2004, according to the new pay structure proposed in the draft bill tabled in Parliament yesterday. Schoolteachers and clergymen will see an increase of 9.8 percent, judges – the highest paid category – 6 percent, and university and college teachers, who are also to receive large increases in their special research supplements, 8 percent. Doctors’ basic wages will go up 8 percent, and diplomatic staff, who recently obtained a 25 percent upward adjustment, will receive a further 3 percent. Officers of the armed forces, police, fire service and the coast guard will realize a 5.6 percent raise and various supplements for additional tasks. The introductory monthly basic wage of civil servants with the minimum educational qualifications is set at 590 euros, of secondary school leavers 690 euros, of higher technical college graduates at 773 euros and of university graduates at 808 euros. All categories receive various staggered supplements, including for performance and responsibility. Symposium on post-Olympics Greece in Athens tomorrow A symposium on «The Day After the Olympic Games: Greece’s Growth Course,» is being held at the Athens Hilton tomorrow; speakers include EU Social Affairs Commissioner Anna Diamantopoulou, Economy Minister Nikos Christodoulakis, main opposition leader Costas Karamanlis, mayor of Barcelona Joan Clos, deputy ministers and business leaders. The event, organized by the International Herald Tribune in collaboration with Symeon G. Tsomokos SA, opens at 9 a.m. INFOTE OTE Telecom’s INFOTE service («Golden Number» 11811) is soon to be extended outside the Athens area and Thessaloniki. The service, providing information and road orientation for a wide range of services (pharmacies, doctors, gasoline stations, tavernas, bars), is accessible through fixed-line OTE phones or CosmOTE mobiles. It is to be extended for access through the other mobile operators. Medicines The Attica Pharmacists’ Association has protested a Social Security Foundation (IKA) circular, effective from November 1, designating just six pharmacies in the Athens area and one in Thessaloniki which will exclusively sell 171 medications costing more than 300 euros. According to IKA, which apparently aims to minimize abuse and cut out pharmacists’ profits, residents outside these two areas will be able to receive their medicines by post or courier. The association said the cost of packaging and dispatch will offset their profits. OTE-Telenor OTE Telecom’s board of directors yesterday decided to submit a buyout proposal to Norway’s Telenor for the 9 percent stake it holds in OTE mobile subsidiary CosmOTE. KAE The Duty Free Shops (KAE) group yesterday reported nine-month pretax profit growth after minorities of 25.41 percent to 40.6 million euros, year-on-year. Sales rose 9.79 percent to 174.6 million.